Can I be holy if my brother or sister is hungry, or homeless, or in prison, or sick or a slave? Can I be holy if I do not do everything in my power to change the situation in which my brother or sister finds himself or herself? Sometimes what I do is the simple act of charity and personal caring; sometimes what I must do must involve challenging the systems that put my brother or sister in that situation. (Gooch, 2006:44.)
Lenten Prayer for Spiritual Renewal
God, heavenly Father,
look upon me and hear my prayer
during this holy Season of Lent.
By the good works You inspire,
help me to discipline my body
and to be renewed in spirit.
Without You I can do nothing.
By Your Spirit help me to know what is right
and to be eager in doing Your will.
Teach me to find new life through penance.
Keep me from sin, and help me live
by Your commandment of love.
God of love, bring me back to You.
Send Your Spirit to make me strong
in faith and active in good works.
May my acts of penance bring me Your forgiveness,
open my heart to Your love,
and prepare me for the coming feast
of the Resurrection of Jesus.
Lord, during this Lenten Season,
nourish me with Your Word of life
and make me one
with You in love and prayer.
Fill my heart with Your love
and keep me faithful to the Gospel of Christ.
Give me the grace to rise above my human weakness.
Give me new life by Your Sacraments, especially the Mass.
Father, our source of life,
I reach out with joy to grasp Your hand;
let me walk more readily in Your ways.
Guide me in Your gentle mercy,
for left to myself I cannot do Your Will.
Father of love, source of all blessings,
help me to pass from my old life of sin
to the new life of grace.
Prepare me for the glory of Your Kingdom.
I ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever.
Resources for Lent:
- What to give up for Lent–twenty-five creative ideas, and twenty more weird ones.
- Lent for Everyone Bible reading plan (via YouVersion, which is also available on mobile phones).
- Lenten prayers.
- Knitting/crocheting for charity: Knit-a-Square/The Ruth Mailbag Group. It will be winter here soon, and both these organizations could use some help. Great way to use up scrap yarn!
- Do the photo challenge. #rethinkchurch
Check yourself regularly by these disciplines. Where do you need attention? Intentionally stretch yourself in these disciplines and you will develop a heart for God.
Are you not a robber, who consider your own that which has been given you solely to distribute to others? This bread which you have set aside is the bread of the hungry; this garment you have locked away is the clothing of the naked; those shoes which you let rot are the shoes of him who is barefoot; those riches you have hoarded are the riches of the poor.
–St Basil the Great